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ready to lead. shinzo abe starts mapping out japan's future a day after his liberal democratic party had a landslide election victory. i'm keikichi hanada. hello and welcome to nhk "newsline." the people in japan are getting used to a new political reality. the liberal democrats are coming back to power after trouncing the democratic party in a lower house election. the man who was once prime minister, shinzo abe, is set to take his old job back. >> translator: our party's
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victory doesn't mean voters are putting 100% trust back in the ldp. people wanted to end three-year political confusion and stagnation brought about by the democrats. our mission is to tackle the critical situation japan faces. we need to speed up the reconstruction from last year's disaster. on the economy, we have to beat deflation, curb the strong yen and create jobs. on diplomacy and national security, we will rebuild the japan/u.s. alliance and then improve relations with other countries and protect our land and waters. >> abe and the liberal democrats spent three years in opposition as the democratic party ran the country. now they head back to the lower house with a lot of political
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muscle and they easily pushed through their conservative policies. the liberal democrats won 294 seats and the long-time partner new komeito, 31. their combined total of 325 gives them a two-thirds majority in the 480-seat lower house. that will allow them to keep their agenda on track. if the upper house rejects a bill, a vote by two-third of the lower house lawmakers can override that decision. members of prime minister noda's democratic party had 230 seats, heading into the election. they held on to 57. abe vowed to take a stronger claim over the islands in the east china sea. they'll carefully monitor how the new administration deals with the issue. japan controls the islands but china and taiwan say they belong
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to them. >> translator: we hope that china realizes the problems we share and deal with them properly. >> they claim that the islands are part of their test. and developing a healthy, stable and long term relationship will serve the interest of both countries. more than 100 million people in japan were eligible to cast ballots in this election, but a sizable number gave the polling stations a pass. the voter turnout sank to its lowest since world war ii. officials with the internal affairs ministry say nearly 62 million people cast ballots. that's about 59% of eligible voters. it's nearly ten points lower than the level set in the 2009 lower house elections. the democrats came racing to power last time around, but they limped to the finish line in this election.
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we went to find out why people didn't vote for the party or didn't vote at all. >> reporter: these angels come out every hour. prime ministers in japan seem to come and go almost every year. the democrats went through three leaders since 2009. >> translator: i felt betrayed by the democrats over the past three years. >> translator: i expected a lot from the dpj but they broke the promises in their manifesto. >> reporter: millions of japanese went to vote on the sunny and warm winter sunday. the weather monday in tokyo was more of a reflection of the turnout. gloomy. people admit they felt political apathy. >> translator: i didn't go to vote because i didn't feel like it. i had work, too. >> translator: young people don't think things will change by casting a single vote. >> reporter: but apathy is not the only reason people feel at a
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loss. a record number of parties crowded the ballot. there was too much choice for some. >> translator: so many political parties. i didn't know which one to vote for. >> reporter: many people told us they voted for the liberal democrats, but not because of the promises the ldp make. they say they were disappointed with the broken promises of the ruling democrats. >> translator: the dpj blew themselves up. >> translator: i didn't think the ldp was the most suitable party to change the situation, but i voted for it out of a process of elimination. >> reporter: and so those who divulged are putting their faith in a party that has a checkered past, one marked by scandal. for better or worse, japan appears to be headed for a period of political stability. nhk world, tokyo.
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the outcome of this election marks a reversal of fortunes for both the democrats and the liberal democrats. earlier i spoke with a professor who teaches political science at a university. what's behind the democratic party's crushing defeat? >> the last three years the political party, the dpj, has been so bad. so many japanese voters are disappointed in the dpj and therefore they reduce the number of seats down to the quarter, or what it used to have. >> this is a stunning comeback for the liberal democrats. how do you explain their landslide victory? >> i don't believe japanese voters gave their full trust in the ldp yet, and even the leader of the ldp, mr. abe mentions that. however, many voters of the japanese had a hard time to choose a party to vote for and the ldp had a plan to move this country. they had no other choice but the ldp to vote for, i guess. >> liberal democrats held power
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almost continuously for more than 50 years. what priorities will leader shinzo abe push forward in this administration? >> mr. abe has to push two things, one is social security process coupled with the consumer debt. the other is stimulate the budget economy in japan. however, mr. abe seems to be very careful about running this country and the ldp seems to be very much determined to keep, maintain coalition with the new komeito and from one issue to another, depending the issues, the ldp seems to change the partner for corporations from the new party, restoration or the euro party or even dpj. >> let's talk about the voter turnout. it was the lowest it's been since world war ii. why did so many japanese skip out on casting ballots? >> okay. i think millions of japanese voters are still fed up with the way the lpj run this country in the old style. they were disappointed of the incumbent, the dpj.
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at the same time they were still doubtful of the new parties therefore the voter turnout went down to 59.32%. >> so how did the low turnout affect the outcome? >> it helped the ldp because ldp has a very strong organization of the voter support and the voter turned out to vote in any case, therefore, when the voter turnout goes down, it helped. that's why the ldp had such a victory. >> the restoration party didn't do as well as expected, but it did win nearly the same number of seats as democrats. so who voted for this new party? >> many voters of japan have been betrayed by the new party. they have expected new party to do well and they have been betrayed in the last two decades or so. this time, younger voters who
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have not experience being betrayed took a chance on a new party, i think. japanese business leaders strongly urge the incoming administration to put japan's economy back on track. some business leaders have expressed hopes that the new government will not hesitate to make tough decisions to open the country wider to global economic trends. >> translator: japan should announce as soon as possible
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that it will officially join negotiations for tpp free trade agreements. i understand the difficulties involved, but the ldp has won a landslide victory and i hope it can lead the country towards those free trade talks. >> others want the new ruling party to rekindle economic growth and create more jobs. >> translator: i want the ldp to implement policies that will make people feel good about living in this country. we have to expand the economy in order to create jobs. we want the ldp to build a society in which young people can find work. >> meanwhile, owners of small and midsize companies are hoping
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that a government will help them survive competitions in the global economy. this man runs a factory in a prefecture in western japan. he faces intense price competition. he notes that his customers are demanding price cuts, saying they are reeling from the impact of the yen's strength. he says supporting small businesses should be the new government's top priority. >> translator: economic globalization is creating more opportunities for small companies like ours to expand overseas. but the government is giving us little assistance. i want effective policies in place to help japan grow. >> an expert points out that abe's government should waste no
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time laying out a concrete path for sustained economic growth. >> i think in the short term, through the next summer, there will be enthusiasm, some excitement, about a new leadership. and that mr. abe can take advantage of that, now, however, in the long run, we are still moving towards a crisis, fiscal crisis. mr. abe needs to present a long-term blue print for the japanese economy. that is going to be a very, very tough challenge. u.s. president barack obama said americans cannot tolerate another mass shooting. he addressed mourners at a vigil for 26 people killed at the
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school in connecticut. >> we honestly say we're doing enough to keep our children, all of them, safe from harm? we will have to change. >> this was the fourth time obama had to attend a memorial for victims of a mass shooting. the gunman walked into the elementary school on friday with an assault rifle and killed 20 children and 6 adults. investigators say he shot most victims multiple times. police identified the gunman as adam lanza. he killed himself after officers arrived on the scene. investigators say they don't know his motives. the members of congress are calling for stricter gun control. some are talking about a bill to ban the sale of assault weapons. others argue that would not have prevented the shooting. people in south korea are heading to the polls to choose a new president. and they could put a woman in the job for the first time.
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two main candidates sparred in the final tv debate ahead of wednesday's vote. park geun-hye of the ruling saenuri party and moon jae-in of the democratic united party talked about how to deal with south korea's aging society. they wanted to raise the retirement age to allow people to work longer. moon talked about higher pension benefits and a ceiling on health care costs the elderly have to bear. they also debated lower college tuition. >> translator: the previous administration approved the largest ever tuition hike. first of all, you should apologize to students and parents for having caused such pain. >> translator: you say you promise to lower tuition because we are facing an election, but isn't it wrong the current government led by your party not to have done that over the past four years?
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>> the latest polls suggest park is maintaining a narrow lead getting her closer to getting her to be south korea's first female president. the race has tightened in the final days of the campaign. north korean leader kim jong un has paid a tribute to his father on the first anniversary of his death. kim visited pyongyang's kumsusan palace of the sun where the bodies of his father and grandfather lie in state. kim entered the recently renovated building with his wife. north korean scientists and engineers who took part in wednesday's rocket launch also paid their respects. they reported the successful lift after the late kim jong-il after the launch of what's believed to be a ballistic missile. the participants then moved to a
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square in front of the palace and offered a silent prayer with citizens. the north korean top military official made a speech at the gathering. >> translator: first secretary kim jong un is north korea's destiny and future. let's unite behind him to build a strong and prosperous country. >> observers say the renovation of the palace may be intended to house kim jong-il and strengthen his son's legitimacy. the death toll from a tie fe -- typhoon has risen. >> the island was affected the typhoon but struck the philippines and the death toll continues to rise and criticism is mounting over the government's lack of
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preparedness. our reporter has more. >> reporter: the typhoon battered the southern philippines this month triggering mudslides. the risk management council said sunday the typhoon left more than 1,000 people dead. it is feared that figure will keep rising, with more than 800 people still unaccounted for. the government failed to distribute to some towns a hazard map it drew up six years ago. experts say this oversight contributed to the authority's failure to evacuate residents to safe locations. such criticism has prompted senators to launch an investigation. it called on the government to swiftly distribute the hazard map to all municipalities. another typhoon pummeled the same island in december last
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year. killing 1,200 people. a second consecutive year of serious typhoon damage is fueling criticism of the government's disaster preparedness. as many as 6.2 million people are still in need of assistance. the united nations is calling for $65 million in aid from the international community. nhk world, manila. the golden triangle where the borders of myanmar laos and thailand meet has been known for illegal cultivation of opium. now they are producing a more luxurious product made with the help of some gentle giants. i went to the regionen to see what's brewing. fog often blankets the scenic mountains, jungle canopies keep the area cool. elephants, thailand's best known
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animals roam the lush landscapes of this border region. i'm here at one of the luxurious hotels in a northern province, sampling black ivory coffee, one of the world's most expensive brews and is made by elephants like this one right here. coffee made from beans picked from elephant dung does not come cheaply. a single cup costs $50 but affluent tourists are willing to pay. >> wow, the smell is great. very, very good. >> we have a lot of people coming for the elephants, for activities. they want to experience something special on the top. it's amazing. >> reporter: the coffee's made at the golden triangle asian
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elephant foundation. many of these animals were taken to cities to perform in the streets for money. now the facility provides a safe haven for 26 of them. besides their primary diet of grass, they also eat locally grown aribica berries mixed with snacks like bananas. beans are picked out of the dung by hand. then thoroughly washed and dried. it takes up to 33 kilograms of raw coffee berries to produce 1 kilogram of black ivory coffee. this year, only 70 kilograms were produced.
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this entrepreneur has been developing the plan for the past nine years. he studied production of southeast asia's famous svette coffee using beans digested by small ma'ams. he honed his skills in indonesia but the spread of the sars virus forced him to rethink. >> what's an animal that will be large enough for production, safe enough for me to get close to, that's accessible and that has a single stomach so the beans aren't going to get destroyed. that's when i thought an elephant made sense. >> reporter: elephants are herbivores. they're able to ferment the coffee better, giving it a fruity taste. 8% of sales go towards caring for the ephants. the mahuts welcome the extra income. >> translator: making the coffee is easier than roaming the
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streets, performing for money. the elephants just have to do what comes naturally to make money now. >> there's always going to be an element of some humor to it but if i wanted this to be a joke, i would have released the coffee nine years ago when i was just starting out. i want this coffee, one it's got to taste good. when people are spending that kind of money it's got to be a good cup. i also want there to be a social cause attached to it. >> reporter: adventurous coffee lovers find the ultimate taste test here in the golden triangle. and their willingness to try something new supports the welfare of the region's famous animals. i tried the exotic brew for myself and i can tell you it was very different from normal coffee, surprisingly light, almost like tea and with a chocolatey after taste. and that wraps up our bulletin, i'm dhra dhirakaosal reporting from bangkok.
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a strong storm is affecting people in fiji. we are watching the cycle here. the center of circulation is just towards the south of fiji now but, still, you have that wrap-around effect continuing to affect the islands. high winds even storm surge near the coast line. i want to show you what it looked like earlier here today in fiji as the winds continued to kick up. this storm system is continuing to push overhead and it is continuing to track to the south. conditions are going to start to improve. still, you're going to continue to see the winds overnight. wind gusts 260 kilometers per hour. you are still going to have lingering rain off here towards the north throughout your day on your tuesday. so flooding is still high at risk here in the country as that storm continues to push down
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there farther away. so definitely want to watch this throughout the coming days. let's look to the north here into japan. we have one system pulling off to the east. another is starting to pull into the west. that is going to bring heavy snow. you'll see 30 secentimeters ag accumulation. it is dropping. it expected to drop near 3 going into your wednesday. as this cold air continues to push in overhead. also talking about cold air and snow is into the pacific northwest and into north america where we have plenty of snow showers here and over idaho and montana. much of the northern rockies could be seeing 30 to 60 centimeters not to mention the winds gusting near 100 kilome r kilometers an hour. all the lines close together indicates the strong wind gusts and blizzard warnings. very messy situation.
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also we're seeing messy weather into the ohio river valley pushing to into the northeast. new england, you're expecting freezing rain, five to ten millimeters going into your tuesday. this just continues to push here. definitely a very serious situation as far as driving across these areas. make for some very slippery roads. do slow down across this region. fen even if you have flights, there could be delays. new york, your temperature is 9 degrees on this monday. chicago, you've been going for a while without snowfall. the last snow has been in march. still, seeing some cold temperatures though over chicago. high of 5. winnipeg at minus 9 here. starting off your work week. now as we look towards europe into the british aisles, also watching a system move away into low country here. that's going to bring rain and snow. british isles clearing out on tuesday. the next system is going to pull in near wednesday. it will be the next big rain maker for you. definitely want to bring an umbrella with you. meanwhile, into greece and italy
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though, thunderstorm activity firing up across this area. it will start to pull off to the east. for the time being, continued to linger. the storms continue to fire up. as far as temperatures into the east, moscow, minus 14 for your high. further to west berlin, 4. a mild 8 and 9 in london and paris. here's a look at your extended forecast.
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and that concludes this edition of "newsline." i'm keikichi hanada. we'll be back at the top of the
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hour. thank you for joining us on nhk world. -- captions by vitac --
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Newsline 30min
KCSMMHZ December 17, 2012 6:00am-6:30am PST

NEWSLINE updates viewers with the latest hard news every hour, covering world events and business-related news, as well as providing global weather forecasts.

TOPIC FREQUENCY Nhk 4, Mr. Abe 3, Ldp 3, South Korea 3, Shinzo Abe 2, Chicago 2, China 2, Newsline 2, Thailand 2, New Komeito 2, Kim Jong 2, Tokyo 2, Kim Jong-il 2, Keikichi Hanada 2, London 1, Italy 1, Idaho 1, Paris 1, North America 1, Us 1
Duration 00:30:00
Rating TV-PG
Scanned in San Francisco, CA, USA
Source Off-Air Channel 43
Tuner Channel 43 (647 MHz)
Video Codec mpeg2video
Audio Cocec ac3
Pixel width 704
Pixel height 480

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on 12/17/2012